Public and Regulatory
Maritime Law and Fisheries
David is committed to developing his maritime practice. In 2015 he passed his LLM in Maritime Law at Southampton University, with merit. He has lectured on the Maritime Labour Convention.
In 2017 he has advised on the requirement for licences for shellfish farms and on challenges to the points system for deep sea fishing licences administers by the MMO.
Also in 2017 he has defended matters concerning collisions and pilotage in Hull Crown Court.
He has advised as to applications for disclosure from the MAIB (Winchester and Hull Crown Courts).
In the last two years he has represented defendants charged with substantial fraud on the European Fisheries Fund, prosecuted by the Marine Management Organisation; he has experience of inquest proceedings arising from dockyard incidents and death at sea.
In December 2015 he travelled to the Falklands to represent the Spanish master of a trawler charged under local legislation with deliberately fishing for a species not permitted under his licence. This litigation concluded in June 2016 in London.
David has previously qualified in New York. He is engaged as specialist prosecutor by the Iraq Historic Allegations Prosecution Team and in that role advises on the application of international humanitarian law to British Service personnel.
He has a commitment to international law and is available to consult on an international basis.
- R v B July 2015 (Newcastle Crown Court) - Defence of owner of crab processing factory in charges of fraud relating to the European fisheries fund.
- Inquest into death of PH June 2015 (Portsmouth)
- Representing owner of marine scrap yard following death of sub contractor on site.
- R v B September 2014 (Portsmouth Crown Court)
- Defence in alleged fraud on the European Fisheries Fund.
- R v Conlin July 2014 (Winchester Crown Court) - Led by Nigel Lickley Q.C. in the successful prosecution of a father for the murder by shaking / trauma of his 4 and a half month old daughter. Case involved complex expert evidence relevant to causation and timing of injury.
- R v F August 2014 (Bournemouth Crown Court) - Successfully argued the accused, suffering acute psychotic disorder, was not guilty by reason of insanity.
David hosted a seminar exploring the implications of Brexit for the UK fisheries industry. Together with Andrew Oliver of Andrew Jackson and Co. they discussed future regulation following Brexit with representatives of the industry from across England and Wales and from both fishers, POs and regulators. Following presentations and a round table discussion the meeting concluded that areas of most concern looking forward are:
- Whether the Great Repeal Bill will be an exercise in buying time by the government
- The need to reclaim territorial waters for exclusive use of the UK inshore fleet and to serve notice under the London Convention 1964
- The need to strengthen the economic link requirements for flag ships
- The assertion of UK regulation of technical requirements, as is done by Norway and Iceland
- To ensure proper, full and as far as possible unified input from the whole industry to the Government’s Brexit Group Monthly Meeting
Other Public and Regulatory
David has appeared for national supermarkets charged with selling out of date food; he has represented dockyard scrap merchants at inquest proceedings. He appeared for the defendant in the first ever trading standards prosecution for the sale of legal highs.
He has appeared for care home owners charged with breaches of noise abatement notices.
In a recent case at Bournemouth Crown Court involving the alleged wide scale breach of trade mark and copyright he was determined and uncompromising in resisting the claims against his clients who had inadvertently fallen foul of the local trading standards department. He has represented car dealers charged under the unfair trading regulations.
He has represented local authorities prosecuting the deposit of waste without a waste management licence.
He has lectured local authorities on the EU Toy Safety Directive and the Toys (Safety) Regulations 2011 and the implications for market surveillance and enforcement thereunder.
He has represented local authorities and applicants before council committees in matters of alcohol and entertainment licence applications.
He has successfully defended a car dealer charged under the consumer protection from unfair trading regulations.
David has appeared before the Traffic Commissioner and public enquiries on behalf of hauliers seeking goods vehicle operators licences.
He has developed particular expertise in cases of death through driving and has been involved in more than a dozen such cases in the last five years. These have ranged from two accused racing on country lanes, to a blacksmith with a defective trailer and a haulier with an allegedly insecure load (R v P). He has become adept at dealing with complex issues of causation and analysis of road traffic collisions.
This latter case of R v P required a detailed forensic examination of the reliability of locking mechanisms on a catering trailer; the prosecution evidence that failure of the locks was impossible was challenged, resulting in a volte face by the prosecution expert accepting the possibility of the locks appearing secure yet failing during the course of the journey. David was praised for the clarity of his advice in this matter, without which the client (54 years old, never been in court before) would have found the case overwhelming.
In 2013 he represented a driver charged with causing the death of two Afghan civilians through careless driving of a 15 ton vehicle. Through challenging the prosecution expert evidence the case was dropped by the SPA.
David has appeared on behalf of and advised claimants against the police for the excessive use of force and libel / slander / breach of duty. He has advised on the options open to a claimant aggrieved by police action amounting to potential false imprisonment and malicious prosecution of a judicial office holder.
He has appeared for the police at disciplinary tribunals. He has advised and assisted the police in obtaining various orders including Risk of Sexual Harm Orders and Premises Closure Orders
From 2015 to 2016 he held the post of Principal Legal Adviser to the Director of Service Prosecutions. This role placed him at the heart of the Service Justice System. He introduced new measures for cooperation and engagement between the service prosecuting authority and the service police. Working with the Judge Advocate General he guided the introduction of Better Case Management in the Court Martial.
This builds on his background as an army legal service officer (1992-6) and his regular and frequent appearances before the Court Martial. He has defended cases of attempted murder, rape, corruption, service fraud, gbh with intent and child abuse. He has been instructed to prosecute cases of rape on behalf of the Service Prosecuting Authority (SPA).
He has previously represented the SPA in the Administrative Court (R v MoD (ex p Al Sweady) ) and has taken a case (R v Bulford Court Martial ex p Bowyer (1999)EWHC 239) to the House of Lords.
He secured the first successful challenge to a terminating ruling by a judge advocate (R v B and B .
His articles on the service justice system have appeared in the Criminal Law Review and he has lectured the Service Prosecuting Authority and defence solicitors.
He has Developed Vetting Security Clearance.
2nd Sep 2016
David Richards reviews Fleet Maritime Services v the Pensions Regulator, on the applicability of automatic pensions enrolment for peripatetic employees
“I owe him and my solicitor everything”: BB - client charged with fraud on the European Fisheries Fund
“A credit to the profession”: HHJ FS - following trial of two police officers
“Outstanding”: HHJ JB - following rape trial of officer cadet
- MA (Cantab) 1988
- Bar Finals 1989
- New York State Bar 2000
- LLM Maritime Law Southampton University 2015
Professional qualifications & appointments
- Principal Legal Adviser to the Director of Service Prosecutions 2015-16
- IHAT specialist war crimes prosecutor
- Grade 4 prosecutor
- CPS Rape Specialist
- Legal Assessor Nursing and Midwifery Council
Head of 3PB's maritime team David Richards together with Andrew Oliver host a seminar exploring the implications of Brexit on the Fisheries industry
David Richards, head of 3PB’s maritime team, hosted a seminar exploring the implications of Brexit for the UK fisheries industry. Together with Andrew Oliver ...Read more
Nigel Lickley QC leading David Richards prosecuted Nicola Brown
Nigel Lickley QC leading David Richards prosecuted Nicola Brown who was convicted of the murder of her child and causing serious injury on two earlier occasions...Read more
David Richards and Sunyana Sharma instructed in significant Falkland Islands fisheries case
David Richards and Sunyana Sharma appeared in Stanley Magistrates’ Court, Falkland Islands in the largest ever fisheries prosecution brought in the Falkland I...Read more